I am currently a doctoral candidate at the Geo-Energy Lab of EPFL. I have wide interests ranging from the mechanics of friction and fractures in geomaterials to the physics of earthquakes and faulting. During my PhD, I'm focused on understanding coupled hydro-mechanical processes in faults and fractured rocks. In particular, I work with continuum mechanics and develop numerical models to understand fundamental physical processes involved in both natural and human-induced earthquakes. I also try to link my theoretical and numerical predictions to experimental measurements in the laboratory and/or field observations.
I obtained my master in earthquake engineering and my civil engineer title at the University of Chile in the year 2014. Prior to joining EPFL, I worked in the mining industry in Chile and I also travelled around the world for two years.
Currently, I am developing a three-dimensional fully-coupled hydro-mechanical solver to simulate quasi-dynamic fault slip and fluid flow in arbitrary-shaped faults and fault networks. By using the recent advances in my numerical solver, I have recently investigated the mechanics of aseismic ruptures driven by the diffusion of fluid pressure. We found self-similar and non-self-similar solutions for fluid-driven fault slip, and provide new analytical and numerical descriptions of aseismic ruptures in 3D. Fluid-driven aseismic fault slip plays an important role in a number of natural and anthropogenic phenomena such as seismic swarms, aftershocks sequences, slow slip events, and injection-induced seismicity. Currently, I'm further developing my numerical solver to explore problems involving fluid-driven unstable/seismic ruptures using both slip-weakening and rate-and-state descriptions of rock friction.